HARROW HUMANISTS' FOUNDERS
Harrow Humanists was founded as the Harrow Humanist Society in the late 1960s, at a time when local groups were springing up across the country following the establishment of the British Humanist Association in 1967.
The founder members were Alex Dawn, Henry Young and Don Liversedge (at least: any others have yet to come to light.)
Alex Dawn (1900-1997)
Alex Dawn was born Alexander Felix Dorn, and joined the ethical movement in 1922 when he was invited to tea with his brother by Stanton Coit, founder of the Ethical Union (predecessor body of the British Humanist Association). He thus spent 75 years in continuous service of the humanist movement, nearly 30 of them in Harrow Humanists with his wife Donna. [Sources: Nicolas Walter, in New humanist Dec. 1997; MacKillop, Ian. The British ethical societies (1986), p.117]
Henry Young (1915-1988)
Henry Young grew up in Germany, his original surname being Weinberg. As a member of the Young Communist League and as a Jew, he was interned by the Nazis in 1933, but released the following year thanks to his mother's intervention, and eventually left Germany on 3 September 1939 "five hours after war was declared." He then fought in the British army, taking part in the liberation of Belgium in 1944. With the emergence of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Henry was active in Ex-Services CND, and in 1985 went to meet retired American and Soviet soldiers at the point on the river Elbe where they had met as allies 40 years earlier. Also in 1985, Henry was arrested in Brussels for protesting outside the US Embassy against the Belgian government's decision to accept the stationing of cruise missiles. Both Henry and his wife Ruth were active for many years in Harrow Humanists. [Source: Guardian 20 April, 1985, with photograph]
Don Liversedge (1917-2015)
An appreciation of Don Liversedge appears on the Obituaries page.
Rosemary Bennett is a retired primary schoolteacher who was Secretary of Harrow Humanists for over 30 years.
(written by Charles Rudd 2015)